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Greenwald writes: "Evidence proves that the graph trumpeted by AP as evidence of Iran's nuclear weapons program is an obvious sham."

An article published by Associated Press about Iran's nuclear program has sparked controversy. (photo: AP)
An article published by Associated Press about Iran's nuclear program has sparked controversy. (photo: AP)

AP's Dangerous Iran Hoax Demands an Accounting

By Glenn Greenwald, Guardian UK

30 November 12


Evidence proves that the graph trumpeted by AP as evidence of Iran's nuclear weapons program is an obvious sham

An article published by Associated Press about Iran's nuclear program has sparked controversy (screen shot of AP story) Photograph: AP


(updated below w/AP's response)

t's important to return to the story about AP's nuclear Iran "exclusive" which I wrote about yesterday. Although it was intuitively obvious that the graph trumpeted by AP as scary and incriminating of Iran's nuclear program was actually a farce, there is now new, overwhelming, very compelling scientific evidence that is the case. Whether as victim or recklessly culpable participant, AP helped perpetrate a dangerous hoax, and owes an explanation and accounting for what took place, including identifying the "officials from a country critical of Iran's atomic program" who made false claims about what this is.

To begin with, the graph AP touted as reflecting some sort of nefarious, highly threatening and complex nuclear calculation is, in fact, widely available all over the Internet in the most innocuous places. Just consider this side-by-side comparison of the AP graph on the left, with the graph on the right on this harmless site designed to teach beginner users how to use Microsoft Excel:

At the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists (BAS), Yousaf Butt and Ferenc Dalnoki-Veress on Wednesday night wrote: "Graphs such as the one published by the Associated Press can be found in nuclear science textbooks and on the Internet." Similarly, Prof. Muhammad Sahimi, a professor of chemical engineering at USC and expert in Iran's nuclear program, told Richard Silverstein of Tikun Olum that "too many graphs like this can be generated by a competent undergraduate student." So what AP presented to the world as some sort of highly complex, specialized document was, in fact, nothing more than a completely common graph easily found in all sorts of public venues.

Even worse, the calculations reflected on this graph are patently ridiculous. Butt and Dalnoki-Veress document that the graph "does nothing more than indicate either slipshod analysis or an amateurish hoax" [emphasis added]. That's because, they explain, "the diagram features quite a massive error, which is unlikely to have been made by research scientists working at a national level"; namely:

"The image released to the Associated Press shows two curves: one that plots the energy versus time, and another that plots the power output versus time, presumably from a fission device. But these two curves do not correspond: If the energy curve is correct, then the peak power should be much lower - around 300 million ( 3x108) kt per second, instead of the currently stated 17 trillion (1.7 x1013) kt per second. As is, the diagram features a nearly million-fold error."

This error is patently obvious to anyone versed in nuclear physics. Nima Shirazi yesterday spoke with Dr. M. Hossein Partovi, who teaches courses in thermodynamics and quantum mechanics at Sacramento State, and he echoed the BAS scientists:

"[Dr. Partovi], noting that the graph is plotted in microseconds, explains that 'the graph depicted in the report is a nonspecific power/energy plot that is primarily evidence of the incompetence of those who forged it: a quick look at the energy graph shows that the total energy is more than four orders of magnitude (forty thousand times) smaller than the total integrated power that it must equal!'"

Notably, the nuclear expert quoted by AP in its article, David Albright, also seemed to be trying to tell AP that the graph contained this same obvious, glaring error, yet AP - eager to believe, or at least lead others to believe, that it had some incriminating evidence - either failed or refused to understand its significance. Buried in the AP article was this passage:

"'The yield is too big,' Albright said, noting that North Korea's first tests of a nuclear weapon were only a few kilotons."

But AP never indicated that this error strongly suggested that no real nuclear scientist would have prepared it, and immediately went back in the very next paragraph to touting the document as some sort of scary evidence of Iran's threatening nuclear weapons machinations.

Then there's the obvious crudeness of the graph itself, which I noted yesterday. Professor Sahimi told Silverstein: "The graph itself looks low quality, as if it has been drawn by hand." And the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists authors noted the same thing: "the level of scientific sophistication needed to produce such a graph corresponds to that typically found in graduate- or advanced undergraduate-level nuclear physics courses." Indeed, they added: "no secrets are needed to produce the plot of the explosive force of a nuclear weapon - just straightforward nuclear physics" [emphasis in original]. They continued:

"Though the image does not imply that computer simulations were actually run, even if they were, this is the type of project a student could present in a nuclear-science course. The diagram simply shows that the bulk of the nuclear fission yield is produced in a short, 0.1 microsecond, pulse. Since the 1950s, it has been standard knowledge that, in a fission device, the last few generations of neutron multiplication yield the bulk of the energy output. It is neither a secret, nor indicative of a nuclear weapons program."

It is, to put it as generously as possibly, completely reckless for AP to present this primitive, error-strewn, thoroughly common graph as secret, powerful evidence of Iran's work toward building a nuclear weapon. Yet from its inflammatory red headline ("AP EXCLUSIVE: GRAPH SUGGESTS IRAN WORKING ON BOMB") to the end of the article, this is exactly what AP did. And it did so by mindlessly repeating the script handed to it by a country which AP acknowledged is seeking to warn the world about the dangers of Iran. This is worse than stenography journalism. It is AP allowing itself, eagerly and gratefully, to be used to put its stamp of credibility on a ridiculous though destructive hoax.

The obligation of journalists to protect the identity of their sources to whom they have pledged anonymity ends when the "sources" use them purposely to disseminate falsehoods. Indeed, the obligation to protect these sources not only ends, but a different obligation arises: to tell the public who fed them the hoax. This was exactly the issue that arose when it became clear that multiple sources had falsely told ABC News' Brian Ross in late 2001 that government tests had linked the anthrax attacks in the US to Saddam's chemical weapons program, a story that Ross spread far and wide - thus, as intended, heightening fears of Iraq, but which turned out to be completely false from start to finish. As numerous journalists argued then, Ross had the obligation to tell the public who was behind the hoax he so damagingly spread.

AP has that same obligation here. At the very least, they have the duty to respond to this scientific and documentary proof that the graph they trumpeted, and certainly the claims they made about it, are misleading in the extreme. On Wednesday afternoon, I asked AP to comment on these issues and have thus far received no response.

As both Shirazi and John Glaser document, the AP writer responsible for this absurdity, George Jahn, has a history of similar behavior. That includes producing an equally hyped and equally absurd report back in May featuring a cartoon-like drawing that, as Jahn put it, "was provided to The Associated Press by an official of a country tracking Iran's nuclear program who said it proves the structure exists, despite Tehran's refusal to acknowledge it."

As the Iraq War proved, there are few things more irresponsible and dangerous than having a large media outlet trumpet extremely dubious claims from anonymous sources designed to hype the threats posed by some targeted foreign regime. That is exactly what AP is doing here, and given how obvious the sham is, it is inexcusable. AP owes a clear explanation of what happened here.

The real story here is not this inane graph, but the behavior of AP and its "sources". That someone is purposely feeding this influential media outlet obvious hoaxes shows two facts: (1) the evidence of Iran's nuclear weapons program must be very thin if fabrications of this type are needed; and (2) someone from an unnamed country or countries is very eager to scare the public into believing this weapons program exists and is vigorously proceeding, and is willing to use fraud to advance those fear-mongering ends.



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- The RSN Team

+71 # Activista 2012-11-30 19:25
Today (11/30/2102) US senators voted 94-0 to make the new sanctions part of an annual $$$ defense policy bill."
This is MORE than sick - is there ONE US senator left that is NOT bought with AIPAC money?
Netanyahoo orders Obama jumps. Save USA - write to your senator ...
+49 # Activista 2012-11-30 21:45
New Iran sanctions ...the Greenwald article is essential - wish we had somebody as courageous before Iraq war.
Now post it on Facebook. Stop Iran war!
+11 # umrayya 2012-12-01 12:13
Wedid have people this courageous before the aggression against Iraq (not war, if you please :) ), but they could not get a voice in the media, so mostly they ended up preaching to the choir.
+11 # Pancho 2012-12-01 14:03
The major media were notoriously deficient in coverage of Bush's campaign to ramp up hysteria against Iraq and provide a fake causus belli.

One exception was Knight-Ridder publications, if I recall correctly. The chain was subsequently sold to McClatchy.

In my opinion the WaPost and NYT were the worst offenders, lending their considerable reputations to perpetrating this hoax. Judith Miller was the only reporter (propagandist?) to suffer any consequences.
+7 # umrayya 2012-12-01 16:08
Yes, Knight Ridder were much better. I spoke ith a couple of their journalists and it was a point of pride with them that they were not acting as stenographers for the govermnent.

And thanks for saying "the media were" instead of "the media was".
+1 # Activista 2012-12-01 22:43
(2002) Similarly, a large majority of those surveyed believe Saddam is on the threshold of having a nuclear weapons capability. Two-thirds of those surveyed (65%) say they believe Saddam is "close to having" nuclear weapons, and 14% believe he "already has" them. A recently released report of the CIA, though far from reassuring, indicates Saddam may still have some distance to travel. It says Iraq now lacks the weapons-grade material needed for a nuclear bomb; is "unlikely" to produce enough weapons-grade materials for a nuclear bomb "until the last half of the decade"; ..
we are less informed NOW than 10 years ago ..
+37 # scribe 2012-11-30 21:04
This is truly ridiculous. All this graph is is a representation of logistic change. The same curve can be seen in everything from enzymatic catalysis within cells to population growth in a constant environment, to fisheries management (this curve is the basis of the MSY problem in fisheries). This is the problem with the media nowadays they are completely ignorant and all about generating headlines to sell papers. advertising etc.
+28 # newsmom 2012-11-30 21:11
what is AP saying abot all this? how could this happen, if these scientsts are right? are we THAT in love with starting wars?
+13 # umrayya 2012-12-01 12:15
"are we THAT in love with starting wars?"

Yes. You are.
+27 # Doubter 2012-11-30 21:15
Gross amateurish attempt at propaganda,.
+22 # Human Right 2012-11-30 22:04
By this time you'd think anything said about the Middle East is a sham. Israel and its puppet Washington DC breath scabs on their noses and want us to fight their battles. How many more people will die for the Ashkenazim mafia empire? It's time for a leader to say enough and throw the Ashkenazim mafia out of Washington DC.
+9 # engelbach 2012-12-01 11:33
I wonder if you don't know what "Ashkenazim" means? It means Jews from Eastern Europe.

The Israeli government doesn't represent all Ashkenazim, so I think your characterizatio n of an "Ashkenazim mafia" is off base.

It's the Israeli government you should be criticizing, not a whole class of Jews.
+6 # umrayya 2012-12-01 12:17
"It's the Israeli government you should be criticizing, not a whole class of Jews."

Agreed, but I would add those in DC who relentlessly push the Israeli agenda, and those who allow themselves to be pressured or duped by them.
-1 # Activista 2012-12-01 12:31
Quoting engelbach:
I wonder if you don't know what "Ashkenazim" means? It means Jews from Eastern Europe.

Quoting engelbach:
I wonder if you don't know what "Ashkenazim" means? It means Jews from Eastern Europe.
"Ashkenazim mafia" is off base...
Ashkenazi Jews, also known as Ashkenazic Jews or Ashkenazim (Hebrew: אַשְׁכְּנַזִּים , Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation: [ˌaʃkəˈnazim], singular: [ˌaʃkəˈnazi], Modern Hebrew: [aʃkenaˈzim], [aʃkenaˈzi]; also יְהוּדֵי אַשְׁכֲּנַז Y'hudey Ashkenaz, "The Jews of Ashkenaz"), are an ethnoreligious group who trace their origins to the indigenous Hebrew speaking peoples of Canaan in South Western Asia, and settled along the Rhine in GERMANY from Alsace in the south to the Rhineland in the north probably during the early Middle Ages.[5]
Human Right is expressing the fact that these class of Jews are emigrants (not refugees) who took over Palestinian land. I know a person/Jew (well educated, born in Palestine, now in USA) who call himself Palestinian Jew - ( partitioning of Palestine, though was subsequently rejected both by Palestinian Jews and Palestinian Arabs) who rejects the state of Israel. Ashkenazi Jews are FOREIGN element in Palestine - culturally and genetically.
+2 # Pancho 2012-12-01 15:44
I am no supporter of the Likudniks, or Christian Zionists butI find your interpretation of the situation to be simplistic and monolithic. "Human Right" is expressing transparent anti-Semitic sentiments.

You both seem to ignore the significant emigration of Sephardim to Israel, after WW II. A substantial proportion of the considerable Jewish population in Iran/Persia emigrated after that establishment of the state of Israel that was implemented by the forcible expulsion of Palestinians.

Many Jews in Palestine never joined the successive diasporas that started perhaps 500 BCE, or returned from Babylon thousands of years ago, remaining and living in harmony with Muslims, Christians and Druze for centuries since before the Zionist immigration.

To suggest surviving Jews who fled from Eastern Europe after WW II were not "refugees," is facile.

A Reform Rabbi friend abandoned pacifism, joining the OSS during WW II in response to the Holocaust. Post-war, he stayed in Europe to facilitate emigration of refugees to Israel. He returned to the U.S. in the '40s, but went back 20 years later, only to return to the U.S. He found Tel Aviv had unfortunately become an American ghetto.

A wonderful documentary, Jaffa - The Orange's Clockwork, that examines the pre-WW II situation in Palestine from the point of view of both Jews native to that land and pre-WW II immigrants who described a rather fraternal society.
+1 # umrayya 2012-12-01 21:44
The term Ashkenazi is generally used to refer to Jews of European descent, few if an of whm can credibly trace their ancestry to the "indigenous Hebrew-speaking peoples of Canaan", who were themselves not really indigenous, but a migrant population that conquered the area and ruled it for a relatively brief time.

The Mizrahim, Jews native to the Middle East can, on the other hand, trace their ancestry to the Hebrews/Israeli tes as can many Palestinian Christians and Muslims whose ancestors converted from Judaism many centuries ago.

Agreed that the majority of Palestinian Jews rejected Zionism, which was a European secular nationalistic movement whose members had disdain for Eastern Jews.
-1 # engelbach 2012-12-02 16:47
A majority of Jews in Europe eventually migrated east. Yes, many remained in Germany. But the modern usage of the term is generally accepted to mean mostly Jews of Eastern European origin.

The Jewish immigrants to Israel from Europe were hardly a "mafia." They were by and large people who had been displaced by the war and were looking for a refuge.

The injustice of the displacement of the Palestinians was not a deliberately aggressive act by the refugees, but by their militant Zionist political leaders, engineered by the British and the United Nations.
+2 # umrayya 2012-12-02 18:09
"The Jewish immigrants to Israel from Europe...people who had been displaced by the war and were looking for a refuge."

That depends upon what period you are referring to. It is also a fact that Palestine and after May, 1948, Israel was far from the first choice of the vast majority of Jewish refugees. Given a choice they would have gone almost anywhere else, and only ended up there because the machinations if the Zionist leadership, born of desperation to build a Jewish majority left them no other place to go. In some cases the Jewish refugees were directly threatened by the Zionist leaders. I have met some of those refugees who decades later harbored deep resentment and even hatred of Ben Gurion et al. for forcing them to go to Palestine.

It is a historical fact that the ethnic cleansing conducted by the Israelis was not engineered by the British or the UN, but was the work solely of the Israelis.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 23:04
I agree, completely.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 18:50
Help me out here. Didn't the British try to discourage emigration to the Palestine Mandate?

Would you call this "engineering?"

The King David Hotel bombing was an attack carried out on 22 July 1946 by the militant right-wing Zionist underground organization the Irgun on the British administrative headquarters for Palestine, which was housed in the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. 91 people of various nationalities were killed and 46 were injured.

The hotel was the site of the central offices of the British Mandatory authorities of Palestine, principally the Secretariat of the Government of Palestine and the Headquarters of the British Forces in Palestine and Transjordan. The attack, which initially had the approval of the Haganah (the principal Jewish paramilitary group in Palestine) and was conceived of as a response to Operation Agatha (in which widespread raids, including one on the Jewish Agency, had been carried out), was the deadliest directed at the British during the Mandate era (1920–1948).[Th e explosion caused more casualties than any subsequent bombing carried out in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
0 # umrayya 2012-12-02 22:30
The British at various times attempted to limit European Jewish immigration to Palestine, it is true. It is also a fact that they had no involvement whatsoever in Israel's ethnic cleansing of the non-Jewish indigenous peoples of Palestine, and it is beyond absurd to suggest that the UN had any part at all in it. The ethnic cleansing of 1947-49 and beyond was solely the work og the Zionists/Israel is and took place over the protests of the British and the UN/
+27 # Deboldt 2012-11-30 22:32
Will someone please document for me any evidence pointing to the existence of an Iranian nuclear weapons program? Will someone please cite one quote from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calling for the destruction of Israel?
It seems we are going down that same road we took to the war with Iraq that is now a shameful memory. Why is no one of prominence calling these lies about Iran for what they are: Israeli lies!
-31 # MJnevetS 2012-12-01 04:21
Deboldt asked "Will someone please cite one quote from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calling for the destruction of Israel?"

Here's a whole bunch:

Want more? In August of this year, he stated, addressing a group of ambassadors from Islamic countries, “annihilation of the Zionist regime” is not just a Palestinian issue, but the “key for solving the world problems,” and he slammed US leaders for “kissing the feet of the Zionists.”

This article is about an AP article which suggests a fraud, with not one IOTA or implication that Israel has any involvement, but the standard antisemitic posters come out like maggots from a rotting corpse. We get it, you hate Jews, now STFU!
+35 # hbheinze 2012-12-01 07:55
MJnevetS, please calm down. It is possible to be critical of Israel, and to want to avoid war with Iran, without hating Jews. And please stop with telling people to shut up, especially stFu! This is supposed to be a civil forum of ideas.
-8 # MJnevetS 2012-12-01 10:31
Quoting hbheinze:
MJnevetS, It is possible to be critical of Israel, and to want to avoid war with Iran, without hating Jews.

Yes, hbheinze, it is. I am highly critical of an Israeli administration which acts like the Bush(2) administration. BUT, this article isn't about Israel. The above posters (specifically Deboldt, by his comments regarding Ahmadinejad, Activista, by his prior posts, as long as I have seen them, and human right, by this gem "Ashkenazim mafia empire", have dogmatically demonstrated, not only anti-Zionist (BTW, that is merely polite code for antisemitic) attitudes, but definitively antisemitic attitudes as well. When human right refers to the "Ashkenazim mafia empire" he is implicating all Jews of European descent. (disclaimer, I fall into that group, as well as being Sephardic) So, no, I don't believe I am overly excited, I am justifiably upset that these posters continually spew their bigoted beliefs on this thankfully open forum. While RSN has (wisely) chosen not to censor even ignorant comment, when a poster "challenges" anyone to show that Ahmadinejad has EVER said ANYTHING about the destruction of Israel, that is an easy challenge to accept. Ahmadinejad is a Jew hater and a Holocaust denier who desires the destruction of Israel; for these bigoted numbskulls to turn an unrelated article about the AP perpetrating a fraud, into a Jew-bashing fest, turns my stomach. I see I've received minus 11 for disproving a bigot, really nice!
+11 # engelbach 2012-12-01 11:29
" ... anti-Zionist (BTW, that is merely polite code for antisemitic) ..."

Depends on the context. "Anti-zionist" to many of us means opposed to the imperialist aims of the Israeli government. There are many Israelis who agree with us.
+7 # Pancho 2012-12-01 15:51
Thanks for that. I read Ha'aretz for my news from Israel.

I'm ever bit as concerned about "Christian Zionists," who believe that the Jews must return to take over Eretz Israel and to eventually die in a lake of fire before Christ can return.

An ethnic half-Jewish, "born again" Christian friend has repeated to me the prodigious calumny for over a decade that neither Palestine nor Palestinians ever existed. That's some serious denialism, of the "Flat Earther" variety, but it helps propels AIPAC inspired policy in this country.
+2 # Pancho 2012-12-01 15:45
Poor baby. And it's minus 23 at this point.
0 # Luis Emilio 2012-12-01 08:37
I think, one of the ideas of the of the AD article was to insinuate that the "country critical of Iran's atomic program" was an Arab country.
-6 # MJnevetS 2012-12-01 10:36
Thank you Mr. Emilio. You actually read this article, along with the prior article. That is the point I was making above; this article has nothing to do with Israel, but the standard antisemitic crew comes out swinging.
+4 # Skeeziks 2012-12-01 12:42
I believe the point is that in the Middle East, there is no one in power to trust. Thousands of years of antipathy between Jews and Muslims and Muslims and Muslims.

They each know in their minds that everything they each do and say and teach is god perfect.

Not unlike our Republican party. "Do as I say, not as I do."

You'd think that they all would see by now that we are all of this Earth and all have to work together to keep our humanity alive. But...fat chance of that.
+3 # umrayya 2012-12-01 22:21
"Thousands of years of antipathy between Jews and Muslims and Muslims and Muslims."

That is pure, ignorance-based myth. For starters Islam has not existed for thousands of years, so "thousands of years of antipathy" is impossible. Additionally, Jews have historically been far better off in the Muslim world than in the Christian world. The greatest period of Jewish culture occurred in the Islamic empire, and many Jews rose to very high and prominent positions there. Large numbers of Jews fled to the relative safety and comfort of Muslim countries during the Inquisition and other periods of serious abuse in Europe.

The "antipathy" to which you refer is less than a century old, and is not religiously based.
+3 # Luis Emilio 2012-12-01 19:39
I was badly interpreted. What I meant is that the article had two poison pills: One is against Iran (directly); the other is to seed (more) animosity between Iran and Arabs.
+19 # reiverpacific 2012-12-01 10:03
Quoting MJnevetS:
Deboldt asked "Will someone please cite one quote from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calling for the destruction of Israel?"

Here's a whole bunch:

Want more? In August of this year, he stated, addressing a group of ambassadors from Islamic countries, “annihilation of the Zionist regime” is not just a Palestinian issue, but the “key for solving the world problems,” and he slammed US leaders for “kissing the feet of the Zionists.”

This article is about an AP article which suggests a fraud, with not one IOTA or implication that Israel has any involvement, but the standard antisemitic posters come out like maggots from a rotting corpse. We get it, you hate Jews, now STFU!

Same old blinkered red-misted "if you don't believe anything against Iran you hate Jews". So limited and introspective.
I think most religions are weird but don't hate them as long as they don't dump their shit on the rest of us.
Anti-Jewish? Not at all. Anti-Netinyahu/ LIKUD/Mossad? Absolutely!
If you think the world economy is grim now, just let LIKUD loose on Iran -and Mossad has already murdered several Iranian scientists.
+18 # Douglas Jack 2012-12-01 10:52
Ahmadinejad did not say Israel must be wiped of the face of the map." at all. Netanyahu & others who continue to make this misquote without knowledge or care are serious 'anti-semites' (self-deniers) considering that: Arabs are semites.

Quoting from from Juan Cole,
"Ahmadinejad made an analogy to Khomeini’s determination and success in getting rid of the Shah’s government, which Khomeini had said “must go” (az bain bayad berad). Then Ahmadinejad defined Zionism not as an Arabi-Israeli national struggle but as a Western plot to divide the world of Islam with Israel as the pivot of this plan.

The phrase he then used as I read it is “The Imam said that this regime occupying Jerusalem (een rezhim-e ishghalgar-e qods) must [vanish from] from the page of time (bayad az safheh-ye ruzgar mahv shavad).” 2006

Ahmadinejad was not making a threat, he was quoting a saying of Khomeini and urging that pro-Palestinian activists in Iran not give up hope– that the occupation of Jerusalem was no more a continued inevitability than had been the hegemony of the Shah’s government.

Ahmadinejad is calling for democratic rights for all in Israel & elsewhere. First human obligation is to listen to both sides, engage in debate, pose questions verbally with equal-time, record & publish the results for everyone to see.
+8 # umrayya 2012-12-01 12:23
Thank you for debunking this ridiculous attempt to put words into the mouth of Ahmadinajad. You saved me the trouble.
+6 # Pancho 2012-12-01 15:59
Ahmadinejad is quick to resort to hyperbole, but his comments have often been exaggerated as has the threat of Iran.

I was watching Bush during his "Axis of Evil" speech and was horrified as the words cams out of his mouth. Iran had been cooperating with the U.S. efforts in Afghanistan by detaining Afghan militants in its own country who would have exacerbated the situation. But the First Moron stuck his foot in it once more.

Reformists and moderates had been gradually gaining political ground in Iran, until Commander Codpiece made that statement. I knew we were screwed at that instant. It spoke to the extraordinary ineptitude of his advisers, as he rarely spoke a word that wasn't handed to him.
+3 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:07
September 5, 2002: In a WHIG meeting, chief Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson proposes the use of a "smoking gun/mushroom cloud" metaphor to sell the American public on the supposed nuclear dangers posed by Saddam Hussein. According to Newsweek columnist Michael Isikoff, "The original plan had been to place it in an upcoming presidential speech, but WHIG members fancied it so much that when the Times reporters contacted the White House to talk about their upcoming piece [about aluminum tubes], one of them leaked Gerson's phrase — and the administration would soon make maximum use of it."
+3 # Activista 2012-12-01 12:48
Quoting MJnevetS:
Deboldt asked "Will someone please ..
Here's a whole bunch:
Want more? In August of this year, he stated, addressing a group of ambassadors from Islamic countries, “annihilation of the Zionist regime” is not just a Palestinian issue, but the “key for solving the world problems,” and he slammed US leaders for “kissing the feet of the Zionists.” come out like maggots from a rotting corpse. We get it, you hate Jews, now STFU!

"Nearly half of Israel wants Netanyahu regime gone, it is not annihilation of Israel or Jews, and it is the regime! The same dudes have the ability to distinguish between Republican and Democrat regimes in America. The late Prime Minister Menachem Begin wanted a regime change when Carter was the President, as Americans we did not look that as Anti-American."
+8 # Pancho 2012-12-01 14:30
The AP article is simply awful. The writer went to great lengths to obscure the source of the involvement, but it's difficult not to expect that it was Israel, given that country's government's history in schemes to enlist the U.S. to fight its diplomatic battles for it.

AP articles have long (25 years) seemed to me to have very uneven quality. At times there seems to be no operant editorial function. Some reporters are simply splendid (Rebecca Boone, in Boise is one such writer) while others are awful, and I would include the writer of this article in that category.

At your suggestion, I slogged through the Wikipedia page. I found it extremely biased and violative of Wikipedia neutrality standards in that most of the page is aggressively anti-Ahmedinejad.

Without (mostly) being anti-Semitic, RSN readers leaving feedback here have certainly and legitimately criticized the obvious excesses of Zionism.
-1 # RODNOX 2012-12-01 18:49
wikipedia is not a legitimate info source----total ly bogus
+3 # umrayya 2012-12-02 13:30
There is even a disclaimer at the top of the article referred to stating that it does not meet even Wikipedia's rather loose standards.
+35 # Helen 2012-11-30 22:56
The war mongers and war profiteers are always at work, and the mainstream media enjoys giving voice, far and wide, to lies and exaggerations. Who will hold them accountable for the damages they cause?
+42 # Pancho 2012-11-30 23:06
The anthrax scare was deliberately calculated to raise the hysteria already present in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

I was astonished when the Bush administration claimed that Saddam had the logistical capacity to deliver his (nonexistent) anthrax sprayed over the U.S. He supposedly had drones that could do the job (though his drones only had a maximum range of 200 miles) and we were supposed to believe that they might be carried offshore from the U.S. on launching ships or boats to spread Saddam's alleged biowarfare.

Bush added fuel to the fire which is still consuming a not insignificant part of our budget. He bought enough Cipro to treat a nationwide outbreak. He paid a premium price for the drug stocks that have expired many years ago, and set up systems to deliver it.

It was priced at over $5 a dose, but legislative outcry induced the manufacturer to offer it for under $5. The government of India offered it to us for 11 cents a dose, an offer that was rejected in an effort to further boost Big Pharma profits.

Anthrax screening machinery was set up in mail sorting facilities all over the U.S., hugely increasing the cost of rural postal service in particular. A post card mailed to one's next door neighbor at your local P.O. has to be transported to a regional facility to be screened, then returned days later to its point of origin. UPS and similar expensive providers.

Just as with Medicare, the "R"S tried to kill the Post Office.
+19 # Sacrebleu! 2012-12-01 00:27
How anyone could claim with a straight face that Iraqi drones mailed anthrax letters is beyond me.
(Just kidding)

Has the very genuine terrorist attack through anthrax laced letters to senators Daschle and Leahy ever been officially solved?

Yet the Ames strain of anthrax has been identified, which points directly to Fort Detrick, not Baghdad.
+15 # futhark 2012-12-01 09:14
Quoting Sacrebleu!:
Has the very genuine terrorist attack through anthrax laced letters to senators Daschle and Leahy ever been officially solved?

Yet the Ames strain of anthrax has been identified, which points directly to Fort Detrick, not Baghdad.

The 9/11 attacks were "officially solved" within days, if not hours. However, the quality of these "solutions" has been seriously questioned by subsequent independent research. An "official solution" that is used as a club to beat down any independent investigation is worse than useless. The fact that the anthrax spores have been traced to U.S. military sources and that the targeted senators were the ones most likely to stand in the way of the "PATRIOT Act Express" speaks volumes as to the perpetrators.

The anthrax attacks can only be explained as overkill by those who planned and executed the 9/11 attacks. They have only heightened suspicions about the official 9/11 hypothesis in my mind.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:28
The next time your suspicions are heightened by 9/11 conspiracy theories, I'd recommend that you drink some chamomile tea and lie down until the feelings pass.
0 # futhark 2012-12-03 06:38
One of the few times I've agreed with the words, though perhaps not the intent, of George W. Bush on the subject of the 9/11 attacks is when he warned us to '' never tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories.'' We should look to science in separating the plausible from the outrageously implausible hypotheses for any event. I'll go back to sipping my chamomile tea after you state that you have watched this YouTube video of Mark Basile, Chemical Engineer, explaining the scientific certainty that the World Trade Center Buildings were brought down by thermite explosives.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:30
Not "officially."

The FBI spent years trying to prove a case against the wrong guy.

When even they realized they'd been barking up the wrong tree, they shifted their attention to a more likely suspect who quickly committed suicide.

End of investigation.
+15 # Salus Populi 2012-12-01 07:55
The great killer of the post office was the decision in Congress to make the agency store up enough $to cover pension funds for 75 years into the future, an absurd and unprecedented demand. Without the billions they have to devote to that, they would be running a profit right now.
+2 # mdhome 2012-12-01 13:24
I think it is silly to think the PO even has any idea how many retirees they need to plan on, especially since the seem to be growing smaller each year. Maybe it is insane rather than silly.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:32
It wasn't a "decision in Congress" as much as it was a deliberate plan by the Republican majority to privatize the nation's postal service.

If you're hearing echoes of the Koch brothers in all this, no need to see an audiologist...y ou're absolutely right!
+16 # DaveM 2012-11-30 23:29
An image of a fairly generic bell curve with some number added is evidence of....what? Given the sheer number of details on nuclear bomb construction that are publicly available, I think this graph is evidence of anything. Indeed, since it is inaccurate, it's not even so much as a photocopy from a physics textbook.

Very sad that what is supposed to be considered a legitimate news organization is doing nothing more than broadcasting internet rumors.
+16 # cordleycoit 2012-12-01 00:10
It is called how to start a war and has been part of the American push for power someone lies many die sort of push for war.Simply showing graphs means nothing.
+14 # rsb1 2012-12-01 01:23
I can't believe how poorly informed you are. Simply look at the history and ownership of Associated Press and Reuters and you will find Rothschilds in the mix. Both news agencies were originally set-up to control content of the media and hide the activities of the Rothschild family. It is apparent from this article that they have achieved their goal.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:35

Bilderbergs! Trilateral Commission! Protocols of the Elders of Zion! Queen Elizabeth the dope dealer!

Your comment sounds like something by Jack Cashill written for WND.
+16 # MainStreetMentor 2012-12-01 04:39
Another attempt at management/gove rnment/control/ exploitation by FEAR, of the Bush/Cheney/Rum sfeld/Rice genre, (let's not forget the "mushroom cloud" comment by the Bush/Chene kakistocracy!)
0 # Pancho 2012-12-02 10:38
Indeed, how or why could we forget?

Publication of this nonsense by the AP is irresponsible and inexcusable.

One is reminded of the transparently bogus "Niger yellowcake" documents that were used by the Bush administration to promote the unjustified and illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq, the misrepresentati on of the "aluminum tubes," the supposed stocks and delivery capacity of anthrax, etc.

A trip down memory lane.

September 5, 2002: In a White House Iraq Group meeting, chief Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson proposes the use of a "smoking gun/mushroom cloud" metaphor to sell the American public on the supposed nuclear dangers posed by Saddam Hussein. According to Newsweek columnist Michael Isikoff, "The original plan had been to place it in an upcoming presidential speech, but WHIG members fancied it so much that when the Times reporters contacted the White House to talk about their upcoming piece [on aluminum tubes], one of them leaked Gerson's phrase — and the administration would soon make maximum use of it."

This "graph" bunk from AP is a similarly crude attempt to fabricate support for violent measures against Iran. I'd look to the usual suspects: Elliott Abrams, Doug Feith, Richard Perle, AIPAC, etc.
+17 # engelbach 2012-12-01 05:19
It's so obviously a generic boilerplate bell curve.

These guys could have cut and pasted a graph from Mad Magazine and the dumb pols would have believed it.
+20 # jpena16 2012-12-01 06:05
So who could this country be that is perpetrating this nuclear chart hoax,? What country on earth feels an existential threat from Iranian nuclear research large enough to pull a George Bush type WMD hoax on us ? For instance has there recently been any country who has tried to do a Colin Powell WMD presentation at the UN recently? Could it be that there is a country that given the success of the Bush administration in scaring the American people into war with Iraq, that they think they can do the same thing with Iran ? My suspicion is, given the amateurish presentation that these so called representatives of this country put together, imply that it is a small radical faction from that country that put this together, because they couldn't get the cooperation of more knowledgeable people in their own country with more level heads. I really hope they get caught and dragged through the mud in public. It's what they deserve for perpetrating such a dangerous hoax to the public.
+11 # Skeeziks 2012-12-01 08:10
I can only believe we went through this before. Fooled us once...many innocents died.

"Israel knew Iraq had no WMD, says MP"
Associated Press

The Guardian, Wednesday 4 February 2004 03.55 EST
+1 # Pancho 2012-12-01 22:23

Nice to know George Galloway had some company.
+3 # umrayya 2012-12-01 22:28
"What country on earth feels an existential threat from Iranian nuclear research..."

No country on earth feels an existential threat from Iran, but there is one pathologically aggressive country on earth that is using the pretense of an existential threat as an excuse for yet another act of aggression against yet another country.
+20 # walt 2012-12-01 06:13
No surprises here as we see influences in the USA that would try and get us into yet another war in the Middle East despite the deaths and debt we have accumulated so far.

No surprise either this week as we saw the USA and Israel vote to keep Palestinians from upgrading to nonvoting observer status in the United Nations.

Do an Americans ever feel like they are being manipulated??
+28 # fredboy 2012-12-01 06:14
As a former journalist, I have tried my best to warn others that the media is now slanted at best and, in some cases, infiltrated or "fed" for political ends at worst. Thus it is now a manipulative tool, not an objective, factual information source. That includes local and national media and the wire services. Tragic but true. Just consider the NY Times' influence before the Iraq invasion, going so far as to publish false "sourced" information about WMDs.

The truth is you and I are simply on our own now. I wish you the best.
+23 # Underledge 2012-12-01 06:17
Why does this country listen to anything Israel says? Could it be they own our politicians?
+10 # MidwestTom 2012-12-01 06:24
Iran is not our enemy. TheSaudi's are our enemy. They are the ones who have attacked the US. They are the ones promoting Fundamental Islam. They are the ones supporting the rebels in Stria who are killing all non-Muslims in areas they gain control of, including all Christians and Jews.. While Syria let all religions luve in peace.
+1 # umrayya 2012-12-02 17:54
Actually, the Saudis have never attacked the U.S.

The rebels in Syria are not killing all non-Muslims including "all Christians and Jews.

It is true that Syria has always been a pluralistic country in which people of all religions lived together in harmony, an which was very proud of its historical place in the birth and development of Christianity.
+21 # CoyoteMan50 2012-12-01 06:48
A 5th grader could have made a better graph using Excel. That was so fake I poked fun at it for days.
But we see the push inside the Pentagon and DC inner circles to invade Iran. That leads to World War 3 and makes Nostradamus correct.
In the meantime the real threat, Climate Collapse, gets tossed under the table as deadly weather events continue to devastate the planet and millions die.
"So this is how it ends"
+12 # David Starr 2012-12-01 10:51
Why does this sound so familiar? The private media monopoly, on the one hand, "cheerleading," and on the other, spreading fallacies, all to whip up U.S. public support for another potential imperial war? I'm doubting AP was "gullible" or made an "error" since it's supossed to be professional enough to get stories straight; plus, these kinds of appeals to hysteria have been rather routine over the years. One could look back at Hearst's yellow journalism and up to the present with sophisticated media outlets helping to promote a war based on outright lies.

Gotta continue to read between the lines.
+4 # TheCoyote 2012-12-01 12:56
And write in indelible ink on my hand: don't trust AP. (As if I didn 't know that already)
0 # David Starr 2012-12-09 11:28
@TheCoyote: You know. Congratulations .
+4 # Activista 2012-12-01 13:02
"Gotta continue to read between the lines" agree - this is skill I learned as a youth in the totalitarian government - and find it very useful as an old man now when his new country - USA, became the totalitarian government.
+4 # TheCoyote 2012-12-01 12:55
I think we're losing sight of one of the main issues here. What is AP up to. Are they trying to warmonger? Or is it just a question of incompetence: this had to start with a reporter and go through an editing process. If everyone and his brother can tell that this was some kind of a hoax or a potentially deadly mistake, why couldn't AP? And when we think that many newspapers and other news media take stories off the AP wire, it's even more serious and possibly reprehensible.
+6 # mdhome 2012-12-01 13:33
WTF is wrong with these nutcases who want what with Iran??? So what if they get a bomb, what are they going to do with it? If they used it Iran would within hours be a radioactive smoldering hole in the ground. A really stupid thing for them to do and I expect they may have enough smarts to know it.
+5 # tm7devils 2012-12-01 16:32
It's the 'hunt for WMD's' all over again. Somebody - or some group(in this country) - wants to start another war in order to make billions - just like they did in the Iraqi war. This has Cheney's fingerprints all over it.
+2 # Nom de Plume 2012-12-01 16:50
It's obvious that this article was planted into AP by 'The Onion', whose staff was still flush with the joy of their declaration of Kim Jong Un as "Sexiest Man Alive"!
+3 # tm7devils 2012-12-01 17:54
Even "The Onion" wouldn't stoop this low...this is really playing with fire.
+1 # opit 2012-12-02 07:04
This is a bit of a lame thread. AP is a reliable source of official b.s. This can be seen by checking the website about the movie 'Leading to War'about the runup to Iraq and the WMD lies then - and I'm sure checking would reveal similar nonsense about Libya and North Korea. NK once lost 30% of its population to American bombing when the West decided to partition the country; and knows well it needs to seem scary for the citizens fed bumpf and hate from dawn to dusk to slow their ardour to murder more of them again.
More details of constant propaganda can be found at CASMII. The systematic lie where nations pushing nuclear disarmament become the real threat - a triumph of mindfucking to pull that off - is the NPT TRAP.
I catalogue this stuff for my own interest. Opit's LinkFest! uses Delicious/Diigo to cache some sources while the blog is more about articles. Special interest items are in the sidebar, retired sidebar notes, and in the Topical Index.http://op itslinkfest.blo cal-index.html
+1 # Deboldt 2012-12-02 10:30
Unfortunately our daily headlines (at least in the European and the US alternate press) declare a litany of atrocity, brutality and duplicity by one Israeli regime after another. The recent criminal assault on Gaza is only the latest, although one of the worst examples of the illegitimacy of this Zionist regime and the necessity of it’s condemnation by the community of nations. The IAPAC brainwashed Congress, the President and a majority of Americans continue to support these atrocities morally and financially. It would be different if Israel were an African, Asian or S.American country not dependent on the US for aid and support. Israel would cease to exist without US aid. And yet they dictate to us our own foreign policy specifically in these most recent examples of Iraq and Iran to our own detriment and disgrace. Talk about the tail wagging the dog.
Sorry. I seem to have gotten this thread off topic with the Israel discussion—a topic that invariably produces more heat than light. More relevant to the discussion was my other question, Is there any evidence of an actual Iranian nuclear weapons program?
0 # umrayya 2012-12-02 13:41
The answer to your question is that there is not a hint of a scintilla of a shred of evidence that Iran has a nuclear weapons program. There is on the other hand strong reason to believe that it does not.
+1 # Deboldt 2012-12-02 10:33
In response to MJnevetS’s assertion that Ahmadinejad has called for the destruction of Israel, all I have ever read is his call for the destruction of the “Zionist regime.” Now, If by Zionist he means essentially, Israel, all of Israel, regardless of any possible regime, then I am willing to concede the point that the Iranian president has called for the destruction of Israel. Language can become quite muddy sometimes. If Ahmadinejad wanted Israel destroyed why does he always call for the “regime” to go and not the actual state itself? There are segments of Arab, Palestinian groups and anti-Semites who do refer to Israel as “the Zionist entity.” They refuse to acknowledge the legitimacy of Israeli statehood. In this case the use of the word “Zion” and “Israel” are identical. Is this the meaning Ahmadinejad is intending when he calls repeatedly for the destruction of the “Zionist regime”? Some prefer to see this as the only possible meaning.
+1 # umrayya 2012-12-02 17:40
It is very important to keep in mind that all of the alleged calls for the destruction of Israel are translations of carefully-selec ted snippets taken completely out of context and interpreted by those who wish to promote a vision of Iran as a major threat to world peace and security.
0 # MJnevetS 2012-12-04 10:38
Thank you for reviewing and rethinking your position (Not that you have changed your mind, but you have kept it open, which is necessary for an intelligent discourse) The reason I interpret his statements as a call for the destruction of Israel is that he has also stated on other occasions, that he would welcome Europe to house the Jews who currently occupy Israel (These comments were made in a speech denying the holocaust which killed 14,000,000 Europeans, including 6,000,000 Jews) Interestingly, after seeing the concentration camp at Ohrdruf, General Eisenhower said that the atrocities were “beyond the American mind to comprehend.” Ike later wrote “I never dreamed that such cruelty, bestiality, and savagery could really exist in this world.” General Eisenhower understood that many people would be unable to comprehend the full scope of this horror. He also understood that any human deeds that were so utterly evil might eventually be challenged or even denied as being literally unbelievable. For these reasons he ordered that all the civilian news media and military combat camera units be required to visit the camps and record their observations in print, pictures and film. As he explained to General Marshall, “I made the visit deliberately, in order to be in a position to give first-hand evidence of these things if ever, in the future, there develops a tendency to charge these allegations merely to ‘propaganda.’” Ahmadinejad is such a denier of truth.
0 # Pancho 2012-12-04 12:57
Eisenhower hadn't seen the destruction caused by the firestorms in Japan, where we burned cities to the ground, or that caused by the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki (where it wiped out most of Japan's Christians), to compare our own to Hitler's "savagery and brutality."

The Japanese had made it clear they were ready to surrender before Truman dropped the bomb. So what was its purpose again?

Eisenhower certainly did see the destruction caused by our napalm firestorm that burnt Dresden to a crisp.
+1 # Salus Populi 2012-12-05 09:21
To be fair, Eisenhower was opposed to *did* condemn the use of the atomic bomb on Japan, saying that "it wasn't necessary to hit them with that awful thing."
0 # Pancho 2012-12-05 13:27
Thanks. I didn't know that, and he was a long way from our worst president. (I expect historians might award that title to GWB.)
+2 # Deboldt 2012-12-02 13:25
Sorry if in my cut and paste these threads got a bit out of order:

I will not go into all the different meanings and intentions that have existed under the term Zionist since the Holocaust. I think that for the purposes of this discussion we must strongly equate Zionism with, in the words of the 1975 UN resolution (now repealed), "a form of racism and racial discrimination. " In light of their long history of atrocity within its own borders as well as in Lebanon and Palestine, one has to define Zionism as a system that fosters apartheid and racism. I do not equate Zion and all its fascist, fundamentalist, racist, imperialist obsessions as necessarily being the mindset of all the people of Israel. There is far more criticism of Zionism and Palestinian apartheid within Israel than within the US where even President Obama proclaims he is a Zionist.
I do understand the longstanding hatred by Arabs and Muslims of the existence of Israel. Of all the stupidities committed by the Allied nations, the creation of the State of Israel has to top the list. It was like putting a hornet into the heart of a bees’ nest. It was done with violence and the dispossession of the people living in Palestine and has been an unremitting source of all the troubles in what has become probably the most volatile place on earth. It would be one thing if Israel were run by a government possessed of some shred of peaceful or humanitarian intentions.
+2 # umrayya 2012-12-02 17:47
Whatever attributes have been assigned to it by various people at various times political Zionism was a European secular Jewish nationalist movement that had as its goal the creation of a European Jewish state. It began in the 1800's as the vision of the Austrian Jew Theodor Herzl. It's founders and leaders were secular assimilated European Jews.
+1 # rhgreen 2012-12-02 13:25
It's either a graph representing logistic change, or it represents a normal distribution superimposed on a cumulative normal distribution. It could be out of an introductory biostatistics textbook, a subject I taught for years. Or it could be out of any intro. stats textbook, in any discipline - psychology, sociology, economics, chemistry, physics, etc. - that uses statistics. Even English - to compare texts to see if they are by the same author. Maybe one of the House of Representatives Republican committee chairs who doesn't believe or know any science and thinks the earth is
+1 # logical1 2012-12-03 13:08
It is not a question of Iran working on a nuclear program but why.
Iran sees the US as a big bully who goes into countries, upsets their government and at times, places dictators in charge.
They also see Pakistan with a nuclear program and the US staying away.
They have reason to make a nuclear program.
Just look at our actions of the past.
What action we should take is the question.
The answer may not be simple, or the answer may be to remove ourselves from the mideast completely and let them fight amongst themselves as they have done for thousands of years.
+1 # umrayya 2012-12-03 19:42
There is no evidence that Iran has a nuclear weapons program, and there is considerable evidence that they do not. The rest is irrelevant.
-1 # Skeeziks 2012-12-03 16:12
logical1"...The answer may not be simple, or the answer may be to remove ourselves from the mideast completely and let them fight amongst themselves as they have done for thousands of years."

Sounds good to me.
+1 # umrayya 2012-12-03 19:45
"fight amongst themselves as they have done for thousands of years."

That is an ignorance-based , self-serving myth. The part of the world with by far the bloodiest history is not the Middle East, but Europe.

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